Truth and Convenience 301 X I seem to see lies crowding and crushing at a narrow gate and working their way in along with truths into the domain of history. Nature's Double Falsehood That one great lie she told about the earth being flat when she knew it was round all the time ! And again how she stuck to it that the sun went round us when it was we who were going round the sun ! This double falsehood has irretrievably ruined my confidence in her. There is no lie which she will not tell and stick to like a Gladstonian. How plausibly she told her tale, and how many ages was it before she was so much as suspected ! And then when things did begin to look bad for her, how she brazened it out, and what a desperate business it was to bring her shifts and prevarications to book 1 Convenience i We wonder at its being as hard often to discover con- venience as it is to discover truth. But surely convenience is truth. ii The use of truth is like the use of words; both truth and words depend greatly upon custom. iii We do with truth much as we do with God. We create it according to our own requirements and then say that it has created us, or requires that we shall do or think so and soŚ whatever we find convenient. iv - " What is Truth ? " is often asked, as though it were harder to say what truth is than what anything else is. But what is Justice ? What is anything ? An eternal contradiction in terms meets us at the end of every enquiry. We are not re- quired to know what truth is, but to speak the truth, and so with justice.